SPEAK UP AND EAT! Voice-activated assistants are changing how America eats

by | 3 minute read

Sales­Fu­el announces the release of its 2017 Audi­enceS­CAN sur­vey results, deliv­er­ing vital pur­chase intent and psy­cho­graph­ic data for con­sumer mar­keters and sales forces across all indus­tries. Now in its 8th year, this in-depth analy­sis of more than 18,000 U.S. adult (18+) con­sumers gives you the exclu­sive insight to bet­ter under­stand what’s in the hearts and minds of your account’s best cus­tomers.

One emerg­ing cat­e­go­ry iden­ti­fied in this year’s sur­vey is voice-activated assis­tants, such as Alexa, Cor­tana, Google Home/Assistant, or Apple’s Siri. Thir­teen per­cent of Amer­i­can adults have used one of these in the past 30 days. Sales­Fu­el finds that users of these devices tend to eat out more fre­quent­ly and have dif­fer­ent gro­cery habits than the aver­age adult. In fact, Sales­Fu­el fore­casts that, “the growth of the voice-activated assis­tants cat­e­go­ry will change the way peo­ple eat from now on,” says Sales­Fu­el CEO C. Lee Smith. “The rise in use and adop­tion of these new devices is play­ing out in this space.”

Sales­Fu­el stress­es the oppor­tu­ni­ty for gro­cers on the fore­front to take advan­tage of this and change the space. “There seems to be a sig­nif­i­cant cor­re­la­tion between spe­cial­ty gro­cery stores and voice-activated assis­tant users in par­tic­u­lar,” says Sales­Fu­el Vice Pres­i­dent of Research Kathy Cros­sett. “Cer­tain gro­cery brands are see­ing more engage­ment from these cus­tomers.”

Some fresh sta­tis­tics from the Audi­enceS­CAN sur­vey relat­ed to voice-activated assis­tant users include:
• Whole Foods is huge with voice-activated assis­tant users. 15.4% have shopped there in the past month, com­pared with just 9% of aver­age Amer­i­cans (18+).
• Trad­er Joe’s also is pop­u­lar with these users. 17.1% vis­it­ed in the past month, com­pared to 11.1% of aver­age Amer­i­cans.
• In con­trast, 22% of users shopped at Kroger in the past month vs. 18.9% of aver­age Amer­i­cans, show­ing a small­er gap between users and aver­age Amer­i­cans.
• 18.6% of voice-activated assis­tant users had gro­ceries deliv­ered to them in the past year, com­pared to 9.5% of aver­age Amer­i­cans.
• Voice-activated assis­tant users are 13% more like­ly than the aver­age Amer­i­can to have eat­en at a restau­rant or ordered take­out 3 or more times per week.
• Users are 20% more like­ly to have eat­en fast food 3 or more times per week than the aver­age Amer­i­can.

The grow­ing use of gro­cery deliv­ery ser­vices and the rise in fre­quent din­ers sug­gests an excit­ing oppor­tu­ni­ty between gro­cery stores and restau­rants and ride-share ser­vices. Take for instance, McDonald’s part­ner­ship with UberEATS, show­ing the pop­u­lar­i­ty of ride-share food deliv­ery,” notes Smith.

The Audi­enceS­CAN sur­vey results report that 55.6% of Uber users and 57.4% Lyft pas­sen­gers used their mobile devices to order food in the past 6 months. Smith adds, “Ride-sharing users are already order­ing food online, so the next log­i­cal step is to deliv­er it to them.”

We can’t wait to see how voice-activated assis­tants super-size this behav­ior.

Be sure and check out these info­graph­ics on voice-activated assis­tant users’ demo­graph­ic break­out and their gro­cery and restau­rant habits.

Audrey Strong

Audrey Strong

Direc­tor of Com­mu­ni­ca­tions at Sales­Fu­el
Audrey Strong heads all exter­nal and inter­nal com­mu­ni­ca­tions for Sales­Fu­el, includ­ing pub­lic rela­tions — which she has direct­ed since 2014. Pri­or to Sales­Fu­el, she found­ed her own pub­lic rela­tions firm and served years as an award-winning jour­nal­ist in tele­vi­sion news. Audrey earned her degree in broad­cast jour­nal­ism from Ohio Uni­ver­si­ty.
Audrey Strong